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Problems for Perfectionism

Utilitas 29 (3):344-364 (2017)

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  1. The Natural Behavior Debate: Two Conceptions of Animal Welfare.Heather Browning - 2020 - Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science 23 (3):325-337.
    The performance of natural behavior is commonly used as a criterion in the determination of animal welfare. This is still true, despite many authors having demonstrated that it is not a necessary component of welfare – some natural behaviors may decrease welfare, while some unnatural behaviors increase it. Here I analyze why this idea persists, and what effects it may have. I argue that the disagreement underlying this debate on natural behavior is not one about which conditions affect welfare, but (...)
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  • Well-Being.Roger Crisp - 2013 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • Explanatory Perfectionism: A Fresh Take on an Ancient Theory.Michael Prinzing - 2020 - Analysis (4):704-712.
    The ‘Big 3’ theories of well-being—hedonism, desire-satisfactionism, and objective list theory—attempt to explain why certain things are good for people by appealing to prudentially good-making properties. But they don’t attempt to explain why the properties they advert to make something good for a person. Perfectionism, the view that well-being consists in nature-fulfilment, is often considered a competitor to these views (or else a version of the objective list theory). However, I argue that perfectionism is best understood as explaining why certain (...)
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  • Disorders of Consciousness and Theories of Well-Being.Peter Zuk - 2021 - American Journal of Bioethics Neuroscience 12 (2-3):165-167.
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  • Perfectionism and Dignity.Pablo Gilabert - forthcoming - European Journal of Philosophy.
    Perfectionism about well-being is, at a minimum, the view that people’s lives go well when, and because they realize their capacities. It is common to link perfectionism with an idea of human essence or nature, to yield the view that what constitutes people’s well-being is the development and exercise of characteristically human capacities. The first part of this paper considers the very serious problems associated with the idea of human nature or essence, and argues that perfectionism would be more plausible (...)
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  • Finding Pleasure and Satisfaction in Perfectionism.Michael Hayes - forthcoming - Utilitas:1-17.
    Many philosophers find welfare perfectionism implausible because it is arguably underinclusive, as it fails to count as good certain acts, events, and things that intuitively improve one's quality of life. Likewise, philosophers intuit that the experience of pleasure directly contributes to well-being. The problem for welfare perfectionism is straightforward: neither desire-satisfaction nor the experience of pleasure seem to perfect one's nature. This leaves two options for the welfare perfectionist. He can “bite the bullet” and argue that these intuitions are mistaken (...)
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  • Perfectionism and the Place of the Interior Life in Business: Toward an Ethics of Personal Growth.Joshua S. Nunziato & Ronald Paul Hill - 2019 - Business Ethics Quarterly 29 (2):241-268.
    ABSTRACT:Stanley Cavell’s moral perfectionism places the task of cultivating richer self-understanding and self-expression at the center of corporate life. We show how his approach reframes business as an opportunity for moral soul-craft, achieved through the articulation of increasingly reflective inner life in organizational culture. Instead of norming constraints on business activity, perfectionism opens new possibilities for conducting commercial exchange as a form of conversation, leading to personal growth. This approach guides executives in designing businesses that foster genius and channel creativity, (...)
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  • A Perfectionist Basic Structure.Avigail Ferdman - 2019 - Philosophy and Social Criticism 45 (7):1-21.
    When philosophers talk about perfectionism, it is usually as a view of well-being, of developing characteristically human capacities. Yet perfectionism can also be a normative account of what we ow...
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